Members & People

Goran Vlajnic

Executive Director, CCCI

Goran Vlajnic has years of experience accelerating the development of capture technologies, from identifying industry needs, to developing collaborative partnerships, to securing funds. He has an engineering background specializing in catalysis and electrochemistry and, in his previous role at Devon Energy, worked to scale up and demonstrate several carbon capture technologies based on solid sorbents and a molten carbonate fuel cell. Goran was also Senior Research Engineer at the Saskatchewan Research Council where he focused on technology development for the conversion of biomass to liquids, chemicals, and combined heat and power generation.

Naoko Ellis

Senior Research Director, CCCI

Naoko Ellis is Senior Research Director for the CCCI and a Professor in the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering at the University of British Columbia (UBC). Her expertise lies in the area of multiphase reaction engineering with emphasis on fluidized beds. Some current projects include: biomass gasification and pyrolysis; CO2 capture, including chemical looping combustion; pyrolysis product utilization including bio-oil and biochar applications; and biofuels.

Sandra Odendahl

Incoming CEO & President, CMC Research Institutes

Sandra Odendahl is a Canadian corporate sustainability pioneer with a passion for using the power of business to drive positive social and environmental change. Sandra started her career in Montreal in the 1990s as an environmental scientist for Noranda Inc, one of Canada’s great, diversified resource companies of the time. She then worked in Toronto and Vancouver as an environmental engineering consultant, specializing in Environmental and Social Impact Assessments for large mining, energy, and pulp and paper developments in Canada and Southeast Asia.

She joined the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) in 1997 as a resource sector analyst in the enterprise-wide risk management unit. At RBC, she led one of Bay Street’s earliest environmental risk management groups from 2000-2005 and then, between 2007 and 2016, Sandra headed RBC’s Corporate Sustainability, Social Finance and Social Innovation teams. Sandra is bilingual and has an M.A.Sc. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Toronto. She is a licensed professional engineer and a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA).

Hassan Hamza

President, BC Research Inc.

Hassan Hamza, P.Eng., PhD, has 35 years of R&D experience at the government-industry nexus, most recently in the role of Director General at Natural Resources Canada’s CanmetENERGY Research Centre. Dr. Hamza is considered an international authority on solid/liquid separation, and is also an Adjunct Professor at the University of Alberta.

Sergio Berretta

Vice President and Chief Operations Officer, BC Research Inc.

Mr. Berretta has over twenty years of industrial experience as a chemical engineer.  He is listed as an inventor on several patent/patent applications and has participated in the design and startup of numerous chemical plants around the world.

Lisa Malin

PhD, Operations Manager, BC Research Inc.

Dr. Malin has research and development expertise on three continents in investigating new applications for novel materials. At BC Research she manages the day to day financials of the company and all grant/funding programs such as SR&ED, IRAP and NSERC.

John Grace

Professor Emeritus, Chemical & Biological Engineering
University of British Columbia

Dr. John Grace began his career in 1968 as a professor at McGill University in Montreal. He then moved to the University of British Columbia in Vancouver where he served as department head, Dean of Graduate Studies, and Acting Director of the Clean Energy Research Centre. Dr. Grace has served as a consultant for various companies in Canada and abroad. He holds a Canada Research Chair and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, Canadian Academy of Engineering, Engineering Institute of Canada and Chemical Institute of Canada. He was on the board of CMC Research Institutes and oversaw the research stream dealing with carbon recovery, processing and capture for Carbon Management Canada.